Qi Wang

Joan K. and Irwin M. Jacobs Professor


Qi Wang is Professor of Human Development, Psychology, and Cognitive Science at Cornell University. She holds a BSc in Psychology from Peking University, China, and a PhD in Psychology from Harvard University. Wang directs the Culture & Cognition Lab. Her research examines the mechanisms underlying the development of a variety of cognitive and social-cognitive skills in the context of culture, focusing particularly on autobiographical memory. Wang has also pioneered research to examine the impact of the Internet and social media as a cultural force on autobiographical memory reconstruction and the consequences for youth psychosocial functioning. Her research has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, United States Department of Agriculture, and National Natural Science Foundation of China. Wang frequently publishes in scientific journals and in volumes of collected works. Her single-authored book "The autobiographical self in time and culture" (Oxford University Press, August 2013) is regarded as the definitive work on culture and autobiographical memory. Wang is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition.

Book Talk: The Autobiographical Self in Time and Culture

Qi Wang featured by Association for Psychological Science   

Qi Wang spoke at the Presidential Symposium at the 30th Annual APS Convention 

Research Focus

My research interests are at the intersection of cognitive and social development. Integrating developmental, cognitive, and sociocultural perspectives, my research examines the mechanisms underlying the development of a variety of cognitive and social-cognitive skills, including autobiographical memory, self, future thinking, emotion knowledge, and metacognition. I am particularly interested in how cultural beliefs and goals influence social cognitive representations and processes by affecting information processing at the level of the individual and by shaping social practices between individuals (e.g., sharing memory narratives between parents and children).

Currently I am conducting studies to examine cultural effects on the perceptual, retention, and retrieval processes of episodic remembering; collective future thinking; temporal moral reasoning; memory through the COVID-19 pandemic as it relates to mental health; and the unique characteristics, functions, and mechanisms of autobiographical memory in our digitally mediated society. 

For more information, visit Culture & Cognition Lab.


(Selected. For a complete list of publications, see Curriculum Vitae)

Wang, Q. (2021). The cultural foundation of human memory. Annual Review of Psychology, 72, 151-179. doi:10.1146/annurev-psych-070920-023638

Yang, Y., Wang, L., & Wang, Q. (2021). Take your word or tone for it? European American and Chinese children’s attention to emotional cues in speech. Child Development, 92(3), 844-852. doi: 10.1111/cdev.13576

Swallow, K. M., & Wang, Q. (2020). Culture influences how people divide continuous sensory experience into events. Cognition. doi:10.1016/j.cognition.2020.104450

Wang, Q., & Jeon, H. J. (2020). Bias in Bias Recognition: People View Others but not Themselves as Biased by Preexisting Beliefs and Social Stigmas. PLoS ONE 15(10): e0240232. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0240232

Wang, Q., Koh, J. B. K., Santacrose, D., Song, Q., Klemfuss, J. Z., & Doan, S. N. (2019). Child-centered memory conversations facilitate children’s episodic thinking. Cognitive Development, 51, 58-66. doi:10.1016/j.cogdev.2019.05.009

Wang, Q., Hou, Y., Koh, J. B. K., Song, Q., & Yang, Y. (2018). Culturally motivated remembering: The moderating role of culture for the relation of episodic memory to well-being. Clinical Psychological Science, 6(6), 860-871. 

Wang, Q., & Song, Q. (2018). He says, she says: Mothers and children remembering the same events. Child Development, 89(6), 2215-2229. 

Wang, Q. (2016). Why should we all be cultural psychologists? Lessons from the study of social cognition. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 11, 5, 583-596.

Wang, Q., & Koh, J. B. K. (2015). How will things be the next time? Self in the construction of future events among school-aged children. Consciousness and Cognition, 36, 131-138. 

Wang, Q., & Peterson, C. (2014). Your earliest memory may be earlier than you think: Prospective studies of children’s dating of earliest childhood memories. Developmental Psychology, 50(6), 1680-6.

Wang, Q. (2013). Gender and emotion in everyday event memory. Memory, 21, 503-511. 

Wang, Q., Hou, Y., Tang, H., & Wiprovnick, A. (2011). Traveling backward and forward in time: Culture and gender in the episodic specificity of past and future events. Memory, 19, 1, 103-109.

Wang, Q., Shao, Y., & Li, Y. J. (2010). “My way or Mom’s way?” The bilingual and bicultural self in Hong Kong Chinese children and adolescents. Child Development, 81, 2, 555-567. 

Wang, Q. (2009). Are Asians forgetful? Perception, retention, and recall in episodic remembering. Cognition, 111, 123-131 

Wang, Q. (2008). Emotion knowledge and autobiographical memory across the preschool years: A cross-cultural longitudinal investigation. Cognition, 108, 117-135.

Wang, Q. (2008). Being American, being Asian: The bicultural self and autobiographical memory in Asian Americans. Cognition, 107, 743-751.